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21st February

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Edited by Cathy Winsor, Tuesday, 21 Feb 2012, 16:57

We had to find a home for the 120kg Zanzibari wooden chest we’d bought on ebay. I must admit to not really having given much thought to the dimensions when I saw it advertised. And 110cm by 50cm deep and 55 cm high is huge. There was a really useful empty space on the mezzanine in the barn where it would look perfect. We just had to work out how to get it over the rather fragile banisters (constructed from Ikea curtain poles…to match those on the spiral staircase). In the end we brought in the huge ladder we use to access the gutters, propped it against a beam, attached some karabiners to the top rung and to the straps we’d tied round the upended chest then wound a climbing rope through and then slowly hoisted it up using a pulley system. It was all a bit scary, especially the last bit when we had to swivel it over the post at the top of the stair case.  And now it has pride of place on the mezzanine and Philip has a Zanzibari chest to store his clothes in.

Yesterday we went snow shoeing, an easy route up to le Puech from Portet d’aspet, well at least it was meant to be easy, only 600m of ascent but having heavy snow shoes on made it hard work. The views were wonderful but we had to eat our picnic very quickly to avoid getting frostbite on the peak. I felt very envious of the cross country skiers who could then do the descent in a few minutes at high speed while we had to trudge down. Now we are catching up with domestic tasks, the holes are dug in preparation of the arrival of six young trees and I can finally hang some washing out to dry, so keeping the washing machine busy.

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